NUM lashes out at stoning 'hooligans'

2012-10-19 18:18
Zwelinzima Vavi (Picture: Beeld)

Zwelinzima Vavi (Picture: Beeld)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - NUM officials and Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi were pelted with stones by some protesters at AngloGold Ashanti's mine near Orkney on Friday, a union official said.

"These hooligans threw stones at us," National Union of Mineworkers regional co-ordinator Madoda Sambatha said.

Sambatha said earlier on Friday their entourage had travelled to two other mines. At Kopanong workers told them they were going back to work on Monday and at the other, Vaal reefs number eight, they said they would not. Both meetings were peaceful.

"We [then] went to Vaal reefs Moab Khotsong and were told that before we arrived, this woman from the Socialist Democratic Movement had already addressed those workers, and said they must not listen to the general secretary of Cosatu."

However, they went ahead and spoke to them. They left their cars and walked in on foot. As they approached they saw two groups - a NUM group waiting for Vavi, and a second group "who are the permanent disrupters", said Sambatha.

"We were on foot. As we were advancing, these hooligans threw stones at us. We retreated."

They drove back to the union's regional offices.

"We are okay. The car was not damaged," he said.

Shortly before that, Liv Shange, a leader of the Socialist Democratic Movement, which had been lobbying for striking miners, sent out a BBM to her media contacts saying she had been taken in by police and that workers were being intimidated.

She later told Sapa by cellphone that police and mine security took her and some of her colleagues into an office on the mine and questioned them. She was told charges against her could include high treason and that she could face possible deportation.

Shange is from Sweden and married to a South African.

"I was the first to be interrogated and let go," she said.

She said she was told she was out to destabilise the situation and that there were limits to freedom of expression.

She was not hurt, and when she was speaking to Sapa she said she was free.


AngloGold Ashanti spokesperson Alan Fine said Shange had entered the mine premises without going through access control. She was then permitted to go to hostels and make speeches.

"After she had finished she was asked if she would accompany mine security to a temporary police office on the mine," he said.

Once in there, AngloGold Ashanti's security withdrew, according to their procedure.

North West police spokesperson Brigadier Thulani Ngubane said because she had been addressing people and "instigating workers not to go back" at different shafts, police needed to understand who she was and her reasons for doing so.

"She must apply for meetings in future if she wants to address mine workers."

Vavi did not need to do so, because he would have had an arrangement with the mine, and was already known among NUM members there.

"He is Cosatu. He has got everything to do with the workers. The instigating element of what she is saying is what we as police are interested in. We are a peace-keeping force."

For the same reason expelled ANCYL leader Julius Malema was removed from the platinum belt a few weeks ago when he had hoped to address workers, Ngubane said.

He said they had been told one car had been stoned, although they did not know whose it was yet.

Meanwhile, after a lengthy strike, Gold Fields reported normal attendance at its Beatrix one, two, three, and four shafts, as well as KDC West. There were signs that workers would start returning at KDC East.

Workers were still on strike though at Harmony's Kusasalethu mine.

NUM spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said this week's developments were "encouraging". He hoped things would start improving soon in the platinum sector.


Read more on:    cosatu  |  num  |  mahikeng  |  labour  |  mining  |  mining unrest

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


An uncomfortable election

The latter few weeks of election 2014, have seen South Africans reeling from an assault on their comfort zone when it comes to voting, writes Daniel Silke


Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
More traffic reports...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now! - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold 9780

BlackBerry 6 Engage your world with BlackBerry 6 OS on the...

From R3049.00

I'm shopping for:


You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.